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Old Feb 20, 2006, 11:07 AM   #1
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SHORT QUESTION: If I were to back off my original intent of the $1000-1500 price point for cameras and go with the more entry-level D50, what features would I lose? What frustrations might I wish I had just spent more on? What limitations does the D50 have? Ability to add battery grip, lenses, ISO range, etc, etc, etc.

LONGER VERSION and BACKGROUND: Please know, I am not lacking for any effort as I post this. Have spent hours and hours in here learning much. Almost to a point of "the sponge is full." So, I'm not trying to lazy my way through the old "what should I buy?"

Been debating Nikon vs Canon. (Thanks for feedback). Leaned towards Canon (can't explain why). And, even found myself ready to justify a $1500 EOS D20. Rebel price point didn't scare me. But did find it WAS too small for me. Agree with all there after I took advice and played around in store.) Began justifying the EOS 20d ($1500 retail) Then, just like in the movies, reality kicked in and I saw the look on my wife's face if she ever saw the receipt!!! Problem is Canon doesn't have anything comparable to d50. Now, I'm back to looking at d50.

As a beginner to DSLR, but one who KNOWS I'll push myself into higher levels very quickly... Would the D50 be a GREAT entry into the hobby and then, possibly a great backup camera? Or, if you know a year or two down the road, you'll want and need more, are their enough limitations in the D50 going to equal quick frustrations, buyers remorse and "If I'd just spent a few hundred more debates." Seen pictures from D50. Can't ask for anything more.

Finally, initial interest is family outings, event photography. Some landscapes as I drive around daily. Eventually, LOTS of little league sports.



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Old Feb 20, 2006, 1:22 PM   #2
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My D50 annoyance list:
-Top LCD is not backlighted
-Metering mode can only be changed via menu
-Integrated flash can't be used to control intelligent external flashes (CLS)


With D70(s) you can have those all and some other capabilities too.

But D50 has some advantages over D70(s)
-Lower noise
-Less moire
-Better dynamic range
-Easier image review in camera

Both D50 and D70(s) can be equipped with plain 3rd party battery grip,
shutter button is found only in D70(s) grip and that needs external wires etc..
(for some reason Nikon decided that "consumer" models dont need vertical grips)


I'm happy with my D50 and wouldn't change it to D70s even if i could do it for free.

I think that it might be better to buy cheaper camera and some quality lenses
than really expensive camera with not that great "kit" lens.
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Old Feb 20, 2006, 1:29 PM   #3
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I think most people here would understand your frustration. I went through and still going through to the same thing, until I finally convinced myself to wait for PMA 2006. Luckily, I haven't had time and didn't have events where my P&S couldn't cover. Well, except for that SF Chinese New Year Parade. I could have used a faster lens.

Anyways, the way I see it you can't go wrong with the D50. It produces better out-of-camera pictures. But the D70s seems to do better after post-processing. There are only two downside that I really see about the D50 as compare to D70s:

1) Is that it's missing the second knob that the D70s has. You'd have to hold a button or two when using Manual.

2) The price of D70s kit has come down much faster than the D50, and it comes with a better lens that it may be worth the extra $$$. D50 with its 18-55mm lens is at $620 @ Beachcamera, and you get a SD Card for free(probably a slow one). The D70s with its 18-70mm lens is at $990. That D70s lens is priced at around $330, so the body is actually costing you $660. The lens is also built better with metal lens mount and non-rotating front end. I think the D70s is much better deal than the Rebel XT. The D50 with the 18-70mm lens would cost you $860.



So here's what I personally think are the best deals right now for dSLR around $1000, in order of preference:

1) D50 body only, plus 18-70mm lens separate ($860) plus free SD Card

1) 20D with 18-55mm kit lens ($1186). This has come down is prices more than any camera, it was $1500 during X-Mas before the Canon Triple rebate. It takes better pictures and has a magnesium alloy body, not the polycarbonate plastic that the D50/D70s/RebelXT has. Its would take at least 5 years before you have to buy a new dSLR.

1) D70 with 18-70mm kit lens ($1000) you buy your own CF Card (1 gig Ultra II is $60 @ Costco)

4) D50 with 18-55mm kit lens plus free SD Card ($620), priced much better than the XT

5) Rebel XT with 18-55 kit lens ($830). Great camera, but price should drop by $140 so I can afford the $140 vertical grip that would give it a better grip and heavier, more stable body.


As you can see, I ranked the 20D with kit lens as the same level as D50 and D70s with 18-70mm lens. The D50 and D70s with that lens is a great deal, but the 20D has a much better body, and the price for it is just too good to ignore.

Anyways, there's my preference. The only thing I'm waiting for is to see if the 20D price would come down somemore, maybe around the D70s level once the 30D/35D is announced this week.

Oh yeah, to throw a wrench to all this, be sure to read this:
http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/notcamera.htm

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Old Feb 21, 2006, 7:55 PM   #4
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I'm kind of looking at the D50 as a second camera to my Fuji S9000. I really like the S9000 and it takes some fantastic pictures. I am intersted in the D50 becuase I have a Nikon F3 and some lenses. You can find some fantastic lenses for Nikon camera as well. I personally use a Tamron 28-200 XR (IF) Zoom with it LD and hybrid aspheric glass it takes pictures as well as many I've seen, or I have an exceptional piece of glass. I'm not buying a D50 to replace my Fuji S9000, but to just augment it. Fuji can take movies at 30 FPS 640x480 with sound and as long as you have the memory for the movie (limit ony to size of card)



I also have a large collections of other cameras, from a Graphic View II with Schneider Super Symmar 210mm Super Multi coated to Kodak Ektars and some assorted other medium and large format lenses. I also have 2 other cameras that take roll film holders and another one that is in the 4" X 5" format (with roll film holders as well. The reason I mention this is that I have been an amature photographer since 1964 and have shot and used all sorts of equipment. It's not about the camera, it's about the right place with the right piece of equipment , and then the knowlede on what to do.

I will have to say that I have taken digital images with my Fuji S9000 and printed them to 8X10 and was vastly surprised at the quality of the resulting print. I can honestly say they rival my large format 8X10 pictures for clarity and smooth gradient texture. It can't as yet quite match films larger dynamic range of shadows and hightlight, but it's a whole lot easier doing a "light-dark room" than the old enlarger, tray, exposure and chemical means I am used to.

I would not hesistate one minute to get the D50. Wife will be happy and you will take some fantastic pictures that will be priceless for the memories. Besides, Nikon is soon to be getting Zeiss glass and I personally KNOW what the *T coated Zeiss lenses are like.

Vern


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Old Feb 22, 2006, 8:09 AM   #5
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I like my D50 and after more than 7000 pictures I know that it can do all I ever want to do with it. I went and played with the D200 at Nikon dealer and like it. It is very nice camera and I am thinking of buying one.

I am thinking of having the D200 as a second camera because I like it's user friendly design. But I know that it will not help me make better pictures than my D50.

I think the D50 will not let you down. You will be happy with it even dealers trying to name it 'entry-level' camera.
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Old Feb 22, 2006, 3:49 PM   #6
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I can't say anything with any real authority as I have only just bought my D50.

However, two things strike me as relevant. D50 is 6 MP and the Canon is 8MP and apparently the extra MP does make a difference in resolution - if that's imprtant to you (it's not to me as i would never prin large enough to notice).

Secondly the D50 does such a lot so well, that you might be better getting it and spending your extra money on the best lenses that you can afford. Indeed you may want to ask the question 'what lens doI want' and then ecide which camera to go for:?
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Old Feb 28, 2006, 7:25 AM   #7
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norm smith wrote:
Quote:

However, two things strike me as relevant. D50 is 6 MP and the Canon is 8MP and apparently the extra MP does make a difference in resolution - if that's imprtant to you (it's not to me as i would never prin large enough to notice).

Ican't see any advantage in 8 vs 6 mp.I do not think there is any difference in picture quality. But one will fill my hard drive 8/6 times faster than other.:idea:

I use my D50 for birds and insects. I shall not buy a DSLR with no spot meter. The lowest priced Canon with spot meter is the new 30D which cost far more than my D50. How do you take a picture like this without spot meter? It must be lots of frustrations.
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Old Feb 28, 2006, 12:22 PM   #8
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